High-Efficiency Lighting Validates Parking Savings
LED luminaires installed outside Walmart Superstore in Leavenworth, Kansas. Photo courtesy of Walmart.
Whether working late or on a midnight run to the grocery store, a well-lit parking lot provides a sense of security for many Americans who walk to their cars after the sun goes down. But just how much energy does all that lighting use? The DOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy partnered with PNNL's Energy Policy and Economics group to create the Lighting Energy Efficiency in Parking (LEEP) Campaign, which aims to cut energy costs from parking lots and structures by up to 70% by installing high-efficiency lighting technology.
When considering lighting options, there are several technologies available today. The incandescent lamps of the past are actively being swapped for high-efficiency technology: compact fluorescent lamps (CFL), quartz metal halide (QMH) luminaries, and light emitting diode (LED) luminaries. These technologies last longer and pay for themselves by cutting energy costs.
LED lights in particular last 2-5 times longer than traditional outdoor lights, reducing maintenance costs by up to 90 percent. Yes, that's right—90 percent! To get in on the savings, LEEP provides building owners with access to tools and expertise for lighting retrofits that will lower their facility operating costs. LEEP can also help in energy efficient designs for new facilities. As of September 2014, LEEP participants have saved a total of $10 million annually since the beginning of the campaign in January 2010.
The LEEP Campaign's goal is to have 500 million square feet of parking lots or structures switched to this high-efficiency lighting technology by March 1, 2015. Interested organizations can learn more about LEEP and join the campaign at http://www.leepcampaign.org/. More information about the advantages of LEDs is available at DOE’s Using LEDs website.